Quijano: Three scenarios for Donaire vs. Darchinyan

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By Jingo Quijano

Last Round

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

IF THERE' a prime example of how a single punch can drastically alter your fate, look no further than that brutal left hook that the then unknown Nonito Donaire landed back in July 2007, which separated defending champion Vic Darchinyan from his consciousness as well as his IBF flyweight diadem.

Six years later, they meet again under different circumstances. This time around, despite coming off a loss to Guillermo Rigondeaux, Donaire is the more accomplished fighter and the heavy favorite coming in.

Darchinyan’s career went into a tailspin after that knockout, which was 2007’s knockout of the year, and is hoping he can finally exorcise his demons by exacting revenge over his tormentor.
Will it be repeat or revenge? The Last Round serves up three tantalizing scenarios. Enjoy.


FIRST. Darchinyan comes out swinging like a madman. Donaire looks a bit flustered by the feral approach and tries to fend off the advancing Armenian banger by throwing jabs and exhibiting lateral movement.

However, in the second round a seemingly complacent and disinterested Nonito gets careless and is nailed by a right cross, which stuns him.

Darchinyan smells blood and attempts to measure him up with a big left hand, but Donaire wisely dances away from harm.

The round ends with Donaire still unsteady on his feet, but he gets in a powerful combination just before the bell rings.

In the third, Darchinyan continues with his take-no-prisoners approach, but Donaire has recovered enough. That knockdown seemed to prime his punching pump and he starts to time Darchinyan’s forays just like in their first encounter.

At around the two-minute mark, he connects with a sick-looking uppercut that almost takes Darchinyan’s head off.

Vic goes down and somehow beats the count. But Donaire is on him a few seconds later, and after six unanswered punches, the ref waives it off. Donaire by TKO in Round 3.

SECOND. Donaire boxes beautifully behind a thudding jab and some solid combinations and handily takes the first few rounds. Darchinyan seems surprisingly meek and tentative in his offense, and it is apparent that the memory of his humiliating evisceration back in 2007 is still all too fresh for him.

He is wary of Donaire’s knockout power and his guarded countenance makes him woefully ineffective- being a fighter known for his offensive prowess.

He does get in a few solid blows from time to time, but by the middle rounds, his face is puffy and bruised.

Donaire continues with the punishment and completely dominates Darchinyan in the championship rounds. He scores a knockdown in the 11th but elects to coast until the end of the fight where he is awarded a unanimous decision victory.

THIRD. The first few rounds can be likened to a fistic chess match with neither fighter willing to commit to their punches for fear of being countered.

Donaire, however, lands a left hook that wobbles Darchinyan in the third and punctuates it with a right uppercut-left hook combo just before the round ends.

Donaire continues to land heavy punches in the third and fourth rounds, but in the fifth, uncharacteristically drops his hands while coming off a break and gets nailed by a solid left hand from Darchinyan and goes down.

The crowd boos, but the ref administers the count. Donaire seems unhurt, but has a look of worry on his face that the knockdown might cost him.

He responds by punishing Darchinyan over the next few rounds with jabs and hooks, but the latter is surprisingly resilient.

Unfortunately, Donaire hurts his left hand while landing a hook in Round 6 and his offense tapers off.

Darchinyan takes advantage of Donaire’s inactivity and mounts a huge rally to dominate rounds 7-10.

The championship rounds are close as the “Filipino Flash” gets his second wind and he hurts Darchinyan in the 12th round with a big left hook to close the fight.

The verdict, however, is a controversial split decision victory for the “Raging Bull”, setting up a third and deciding bout for these two warriors in March of next year.

LAST ROUND. It’s on little cherub Zechary Tam Acevedo who was recently welcomed into the Christian world by doting parents, Jose and Mapple. Cheers!

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on November 06, 2013.


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